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I've just finished listening to the audio version of Bill Bryson's 'The Road to Little Dribbling'. It's great. He doesn't sound such a happy bunny these days but his observations on the things that are concerning him about the UK are witty, wry and worth considering. Excellent value, 11 CDs. Edit: I'm not sure if I should have started a new thread, I just didn't know where to put this - please move it if it should be somewhere else!
chesilbeach posted a topic in Non FictionA Carpet Ride to Khiva by Christopher Aslan Alexander is the account of how the author originally travelled to Khiva, a remote city in Uzbekistan to work for a charity, but falling in love with the country, eventually set up a carpet weaving school for those people who would normally not be fit to work and would claim disability benefits. Through his story, we find out not only about the history of this city and country, but the process of searching for the traditional designs and techniques of carpet making, the difficulties of providing a fair wage while avoiding the corruption of the authorities and most of all, the warmth from the local people who embrace him as part of their families. A mixture of travelogue and memoir, I thoroughly enjoyed this book, and learned so much about a country I knew almost nothing about. Told with warmth and humour, but recounting the frustrations of a stranger in a foreign land, a genuinely interesting and insightful look at Khiva, conjuring up the colourful and exotic along with the mundaneness of every day life.